• Do people with herpes tolerate COVID more easily?
• It is dangerous to dry clothes inside your house?
• The wife of Pfizer’s CEO died after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.
• 108 professional football players died in 2021 due to side effects from vaccinations against COVID.
• The Omicron variant only affects the vaccinated.

These are some of the myths, misinformation, and examples of fake news and that NewsSpectrum Fellow Irina Kolesnikova from Rus.Delfi and the investigative team of the Estonian-language newspaper Eesti Päevaleht debunked or fact-checked.

Thanks to a NewsSpectrum grant, Rus.Delfi, working with Eesti Päevaleht, launched a new Russian-language fact-checking project in Rus.Delfi. Titled ”Let’s get to the bottom of the truth” (Докопаемся до правды in Russian),the project scrutinzed 28 claims.

Through a series of analysis, expert interviews, and investigations, the journalists produced a broader explanation of the origins and backgrounds of specific false claims and misleading narratives about the COVID-19 virus, vaccination, and the pandemic in general.

In addition to the section on Rus.Delfi website, they launched a Telegram channel under the same name.

Rus.Delfi is the Russian-language edition of Delfi Estonia. The target audience of RusDelfi is the Russian-speaking population of Estonia (30 percent of population)

Eesti Päevaleht is an Estonian-language daily newspaper published by Ekspress Meedia AS with circulation of 12,000 copies a day. They run a dedicated disinformation debunking and factchecking section (https://epl.del) on their website, which served as a model for this Russian-language project.

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